Photo of James McCulloch
Lance-Corporal James McCulloch
1st Battalion, Gordon Highlanders
Died 13 November 1916
Before the start of the Great War James McCulloch, the third son of John McCulloch of Cairnpat, Lochans, worked for the Nicholsons of Kidsdale Farm near Whithorn. After the outbreak of war it was not long before James, on 7 January 1915, enlisted at Ayr with the 1st Battalion, the Gordon Highlanders, leaving behind a wife and young daughter (both named Annie). James’ wife, Annie Malone, was to lose two brothers in the conflict (Blain and David).
Private McCulloch arrived in France on 18 January 1915 and was quickly into action and wounded. Indeed in August the Galloway Gazette reported that he had been wounded three times. In September 1915 the 1st Battalion was involved in the Battle of Loos and suffered terrible casualties. It is possible that, as a consequence of the wounds he suffered in August, that Private McCulloch was spared the horrors of Loos.  However in December 1916 the Galloway Gazette reported that he had been wounded four times on 13th November 1916. As may be expected in time of war there was considerable confusion over casualties. Although the above report implies that, though wounded, the whereabouts of Private McCulloch were known, this does not seem to be the case. On 10 March 1917 the Gazette reported:
Considerable anxiety is felt as to the fate of Private Jas McCulloch, Gordon Highlanders, who has been missing for four months. He had been at the front for two years, and has come through some of the fiercest fighting. Any information as to Private McCulloch will be thankfully received by Mrs McCulloch, High Vennel, Wigtown.
On 29 December 1917 that the Gazette confirmed Pte McCulloch’s death, at the age of 34. His body was not found and he is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial, the Memorial to the Missing of the Somme. It bears the names of more than 72,000 officers and men of the United Kingdom and South African forces who died in the Somme sector before 20 March 1918 and have no known grave. Over 90% of those commemorated died between July and November 1916.

The Galloway Gazette (13 November 1920) carried the following:
“In loving memory of my dear Daddy, Lance-Corporal James McCulloch, who was killed in action at the Battle of the Somme on 13th November 1916.
Far from his home he lies at rest,
And strangers tend his grave;
But still in hearts that loved him best
Is dear the life he gave.
Inserted by his wee daughter, Annie, 21 Harbour Road, Wigtown.”